Things were getting just a bit cumbersome, so let's take a fresh start. I expect that we'll continue with many threads from the previous posts-and-comments, but, especially for newer members, it's a bit daunting to plow through 100+ comments just to catch up!
Let's pick up from a comment that John made. Paraphrasing, he reminded us that God is the one who makes/is making all things new. This Isaianic prophecy is reaffirmed throughout the NT (new commandment, new covenant, new creation, new community, new commission, just for starters), and is nearly the final comment in our Scripture--"Behold," says the one seated on the throne, "I am making everything new!" (Rev 21:5). This is what we've been wrestling with, the continuities and discontinuities between the "new" and the "old."
Let me suggest the Resurrection as an icon for us, as it provides an interesting "take" on the new and the old. In one sense, the Resurrection strongly reaffirms the "old"--against gnosticism in all its forms, the physical body of Jesus was raised to new life. God has neither abandoned our bodies, nor the creation in which those embodied persons live, move and have their beings. At the same time, the resurrection body is unlike anything we know. It is both continuous with the old, yet also discontinuous. It is not a "natural progression" from the old; we can't look at the old and then find our way automatically into the new... yet once we find ourselves in the new, it nevertheless has a familiar ring or feel to it. We feel "at home," even though we've never been there before!
As Joseph said, these conversations don't require much steering, and God help anyone who attempts to "manage" them! Gentlemen, and all ladies who care to join in, start your engines!